Graham’s Hardest Yet

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Dave Graham has completed a boulder problem in Switzerland that he says is his hardest yet — and may be the hardest in the world. Graham added a seven-move sit-down start to The Dagger (8b+/V14), a 2003 problem established by Toni Lamprecht on backside of the granite boulder in Cresciano that holds the well-known route Dreamtime. Graham made the second ascent of The Dagger in December. He called the new, extended problem The Story of Two Worlds and graded it V15 (8c), saying it was much harder than the Swiss problems New Base Line and Dreamtime, which originally were given V15 but which Graham now feels were V14, even before Dreamtime got chipped. In an email, Graham wrote, “I have done the whole line now after six days of trying and three years of fucking around with trying to get an idea of how to get on… It starts with seven BIG moves at 8b or 8b+ (it’s harder than The Dagger for me, and it’s my style, so it’s probably 8b+), which is very friction-dependent and crimpy as all hell, directly climbing into an incredibly physical 8b+. I saw the line four years ago and until this season … could not even fathom the sequence and the resistance (strength) to actually climb in it.” Throwing down the gauntlet, Graham added, “I think this is the hardest bloc (boulder) yet, and I think it can change the malprogression we can see when we are seeing millions of 8b+ and 8c blocs climbed everywhere. Now it’s just about comparison.”